Internet has become an integral part of our lives and we spend countless hours consuming content on websites or social networks. The content we consume comes in many forms, like text posts, images , gifs and video, together all this content is what makes web interesting enough for us to spend all our days going through an endlessly fresh feed on content.
If you see the internet in this perspective then it can be divided into two groups of users, content creators and consumers, and this ecosystem of web will not work without any one of them. If content creators stop making new content then there would be nothing new for content consumers.
The 1% Rule In internet culture, there is a general consensus that vast majority of any website users don’t create new content and are just lurkers who benefit from content created by around 1% of the creators. This is often called the 1% rule and to better understand this let’s divide the internet population into three groups namely Creators, Contributors, and Lurkers.
Although it might seem like a lot of people are creating content for everyone but in reality the Creators in this case are a mere 1% of the internet population or maybe even fewer. About 9% users contribute to the content in the form of comments and edits where as 90% of the internet users are just lurkers who have never created any content. This statistic might not be relevant to the social media where basically everyone is creating some form of content but even on social media platforms vast majority of users don’t identify themselves as content creators or social media influencers.
You are Already a Content Creator
If you have ever used any social media platform , which you most probably would’ve used, then you’ve been providing fresh content for your audience and even if you know it or not, you are a content creator already. The main difference between an average social media user or lurker and a professional content creator would be the reason and quality of content they are posting online. Any content creator, who is consciously creating content, will be doing so with some end goal of either growing an audience to monetise their content, become an influencer or some other reason.
Why People Create Digital Content? 5 Reasons of Content Creation
After years of lurking there comes a time when you want to try sharing your opinions or knowledge with people around you and this is how content creation starts, with an idea that you want everyone to know. Maybe for need of self validation or due to the general human need to share what they learn. People create content for many reasons, some of which i will be discussing below, and if you want to be a content creator then i would suggest you to choose one of following reasons, the one you can relate to yourself.
- To Educate: Blogs, Wikipedia entries , Youtube educational videos are all examples of content produces with the intention of educating people about a variety of topics and ideas. It’s due to this reason of content creation that you can find information about anything on internet, most of which is not even taught in schools.
- To Inform: Online content like news stories and event coverage is created with the intent of informing public about current affairs and things happening around them. This is much like journalism in digital age and creators have a responsibility to follow journalism ethics.
- To Persuade: Web content is the source of information and recommendations for most people in digital world so this creates an opportunity for content creators to influence the way you think and make decisions. This opportunity is exploited by businesses to promote their products by creating content to persuade users into buying whatever they are selling. The same opportunity is also used by influencers and individual content creators to promote their own ideas and opinions about a wide range of topics.
- To Entertain: Online content is not always created for just information, more often than not it is created just to entertain vast majority of internet users that are here just to be entertained. This type of content is usually the most popular among the consumers and has led to the creation of movies, memes, gifs, quizzes , photography niches. Most of the viral content on social media is often entertainment or news related because everyone likes to be entertained.
- To Documenting Life & Personal Interests: Instead of keeping physical journals or diaries most of us find it easy to share our experiences online with everyone and document life in form of vlogs , status updates, and uploading photos. Another reason would be to talk about your personal interests and share your opinions with rest of the world.
You may have noticed that i didn’t mention any financial reasons of creating content. I think money that comes with making anything should always be a secondary reason. Once you create quality content that gives value to everyone then there are countless ways monetise content, that I will discuss in a followup post.
Where to Start Creating Content?
Once you’ve chosen a reason ( other than money ) to become a content creator it’s time to look at the mediums that you can use to distribute that content to your audience. Nobody is good at everything, you may be a good writer but a terrible film maker, so choose a medium of expression that you find comfortable to use. Here are four ways you can create content
- Write articles or stories on personal blog if you are good in writing.
- Create videos for youtube if you are interested in film making.
- Showcase your photography skills on Instagram or blog if you like photography.
- Start a podcast if you can speak clearly and have a good voice.
These are just a few examples of content creation that you can try, possibilities are endless and maybe you can come up with something unique and original. The thing about internet is that you don’t have to follow the trends, you can create your own thing based on your unique interests. All you have to do is start somewhere and over time you will only get better at content creation.